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happened. >> that's, again, the very latest of state police there in connecticut. pete williams, our justice correspondent, also reporting that a second suspect is in custody. we are told a suspect is being questioned with the shooting. we don't know his relationship is to all of this. amanda ross is with wvit, nbc affiliate in that area. she is standing by with the very latest. what can you tell us? >> pretty much what you heard there. we do have reports of now confirmed several students and staff were killed inside that school. the shooter also found dead inside that school. as you heard from connecticut state police lieutenant paul vance, they're now going through the process of dealing with searching that school, issuing a search warrant and going to collect evidence there. what we are told right now is that the governor of connecticut, governor dannel malloy is meeting with families and not releasing the information that we need right now is because the governor wants to make sure that the families get that information first. and of course, as we've heard, we have sources that s
justice correspondent pete williams a short time ago. what we know about the gunmen, according to pete, is that he is 20 years old. there have been some other reports indicating that he did have a relationship to a child in the school, that he may have been the father of one of the students, but, again, at this point we don't know a great deal about the gunman other than the fact that he is dead, so, again, as we continue to await -- again, i have just been told during the course of our conversation here that the death toll is now gone from 24 to 26 now. 26 dead, 18 children, eight adults. as you indicated, andrea, those numbers we expect to change. i'll send it back to you right now. >> pete is reporting now. pete williams is reporting that according to federal officials the total number of dead now are 26. obviously fast-moving events as we await for law enforcement, we've been told by jay carney that the president was notified in the oval office at 10:30 this morning by jon brennan, his homeland security advisor of the evolving situation in connecticut. we can see that ambulances an
to be one of the next year's biggest battle. justice correspondent pete williams has details. >> if you things illustrate the nation's divide over guns as sharply as this. the debate over high capacity magazines that can hold more than ten rounds of ammunition. on the website of brown el's which calls itself the biggest supplier of accessories, 20 and 30 round magazines are featured stocking stuffs. the company's president says sales in one 72 who your period equalled what's usually sold in 3 1/2 years. connecticut state police say adam lanza used several clips on a semi-automatic rifle to shoot the 26 victims at sandy hook elementary. >> these mass killings have to stop and we have to do everything we can. it will include looking at how many bullets do you need in a magazine in a semi-automatic weapon. >> on "meet the press," david gregory asked the nra's chief spokesman, why not bring back the ten-year ban that expired in 2004. >> i don't believe that's going to make one difference. there are so many different ways to evade that. you had that for ten years when goin feinstein passed t
getting new information in from nbc's pete williams. he reports that two officials, federal and state, say initial reports indicate many children at the school were shot. perhaps at least 20. chris jansing is standing by, but, first, let's go take a listen to the press conference happening now. >> we offer our heart felt sympathies to all those who have been affected by this tragic shooting. we have received three victims of that shooting. we are actively providing care and support to all those who have come here. the e.p.a. is currently under lockdown, and the reason for that is really out of an abundance of caution. we want to be sure that we allow the e.d. team to focus on the work at hand. there will be -- i'm told that there will be a press conference at 1:00 from the state police out in newtown, and to the extent that there is further information, we would offer them as a resource for additional details. i would like to have pat roderick and chairman of the emergency department speak to you briefly about this morning. >> thank you. >> first of all, we would like to send our prayers a
to bring an nbc justice correspondent pete williams. pete, good evening. >> al, good evening to you. the bare details are starting to emerge here now. the authorities tell us that the gunman in this school shooting is a 20-year-old who lived in newtown, connecticut. adam lanza who lived with his mother who was a teacher at the school. and, as best authorities are able to piece together what happened, this is the picture that is emerging. that early this morning he shot his mother at the home where the two of them lived together. then got in her car with guns that she had legally purchased, that were registered to her, drove in her car to the school, entered the school at about 9:30. started shoot first in the principal's area. and then as authorities have said, in two classrooms, including, we believe, one of the classrooms where his mother taught, which was predominantly young people. kindergarten age. after shooting them, he then turned the gun on himself. now, there was some confusion earlier today about the identity of the person who had committed this horrible act. because, app
, pete williams. he has been dig into the background of the 20-year-old gunman and events that may have led up to the shooting rampage yesterday. what more can you tell us about the gunman's activities leading up to the shooting? >> we are looking at a number of possibilities here. one is that he may have ride to buy a gun at a gun store in connecticut on tuesday. what we are told is he tried to buy a gun but that the gun store wouldn't sell it to him because he wouldn't abide by the background check or waiting period. now, the other thing that authorities are looking at is that they have been told that on the day before the shooting, there was some kind of altercation at the school. that someone came in and got in an argument with four adults there. and that three of those power were killed in the shooting and the question is was that person who came into that altercation adam lanza the man who authorities say carried out the shooting? the way it is described to me now is that that's a lead they are investigating, that's one possibility. that's not confirmed that, in fact, it is someth
about the shooter and what he did in the days before the attack. nbc's pete williams is in washington. pete with a good day, what have you learned? >> reporter: alex, the connecticut authorities have not yet formally identified the gunman, but we're been told and i think it's widely known it's adam lanza is his name, 20 years old who was living with his mother. they say the shooting actually began that morning about three miles from the school at the home where he was living with his mother, that he shot her then drove her car to the school. now we're told that he had actually four handguns when he entered the school. we had known about the first two. they say there were two others that were found. and then he also had a rifle that was not brought into the school we're told by several officials, that it was left in the car, and that all these weapons were legally purchased by his parents. although officials say on tuesday of this past week adam lanza went to a sporting goods store in connecticut and tried to buy a rifle but was turned down for various reasons, because of the connectic
in newtown starting off our coverage tonight, thanks. pete williams has been following this whole sorry case and every development in the investigation since we were first informed of it friday. he's in our d.c. newsroom tonight with more. pete, good evening. >> brian, investigators say adam lanza did not leave behind any note or letter that might reveal what was going through his mind before the shooting. hopes were high that his computer might provide some answers, but so far they say it has not. the police who found nancy lanza, adam lanza's mother, shot to death in bed, also found his computer. they say its internal hard drive, similar to this one, had been removed and severely damaged. attempts to get information from it, law enforcement officials say have so far not been successful. though experts say it can be difficult it's not always impossible. >> i've seen people try to damage a hard drive with a sledgehammer or screwdriver or through it in the river. and in most of those cases the forensic efforts have been able to recover some data from the hard drive. >> reporter: as for the gu
been unable to obtain information from his commuter's damaged hard drive. pete williams has more on the investigation. >> reporter: the police who found nancy lanza, adam lanza's mother shot to death in bed also found his computer. they say its internal hard drive had been removed and severely damaged. attempts to get information from it, law enforcement officials say, have so far not been successful. experts say though it can be difficult, it's not always impossible. >> i seen people try to damage a hard drive with a sledgehammer, screwdriver, throw it in the river, in most of those cases the forensic experts have been able to recover some data. >> reporter: as for the guns used in the shooting, officials say nancy lanza legally bought them in the past few years. atf agents verified she and her son adam visited shooting ranges. her friends say so, too. >> she had done this for adam partly to teach him responsibility and to get him out and interacting with people. he took great pride in the fact that he knew how to be safe with the guns and was very responsible with them. >> repo
, according to a cnn research poll, over 60% of those support a ban on semiautomatic weapons. as pete williams reports, the gun lobby has other ideas. >> reporter: in camden, new jersey, a record-breaking 1,100 guns turned into the police buyback after the newtown shooting. some saying they wanted the guns out of the house. >> it won't be easy, but that can't be an excuse not to try. >> reporter: among possibilities, banning military-style guns called assault weapons and high capacity gun clips or magazines. stopping private gun sales without background checks. the gun show loophole. confirming a permanent director for atf, the nation's gun law enfonser, making it easier to get access to mental health care and changing a culture that glorifies gun violence. democrats are pushing to bring back the assault weapons ban that ran from 1994 to 2004. they want to ban guns like the bush master xm-15, the type fired in the newtown shooting. some studies say the number of mass shootings has stayed about the same over the past three decades, an average of 20 a year, even with the previous ban in place. >
's justice correspondent, pete williams. >> reporter: in seattle entrepreneur brendon kennedy is putting his yale mba to work at what is apparently the nation's first private equity firm focused solely on marijuana. he is counting on the growing acceptance of it first for medical and now recreational use to fuel a boom. >> it is an industry that is in desperate need of professionalism. >> reporter: his group's maiden effort is this website, a service offering reader reviews of hundreds of different strains of marijuana, along with where to get them. >> it's a chance to create an entire new industry. you don't get opportunities like that many times in your lifetime. everything will be created from scratch. >> reporter: one study says the marijuana market is worth $2 billion a year and could reach $9 billion in five years, eventually doubling to $20 billion. but there is a huge catch. growing, selling, and using marijuana is still against federal law. as a result, banks won't do business with the marijuana trade. no checking accounts, no convenient way to pay salaries, and no ability to accept
. justice correspondent pete williams joins me. pete, the fact that they took both of these cases, what is the significance from your analysis? >> well, it's the prop 8 case, andrea, that could be the biggy. it could be very narrow. the doma case has a very straight forward question. is it constitutional for a federal law to say that the government will not recognize marriages even when they're legal in the states, so that if married couples get married in the nine states where it's now legal, the federal government doesn't recognize those marriages. there's a question about whether that's unconstitutional discrimination, but if the supreme court does strike down doma, it doesn't say anything about whether the states must permit same-sex marriage, it only says if they do, the federal government must recognize them. so it's the proposition 8 case from california that potentially raises the bigger question. now, as it comes to the supreme court, it comes in a very narrow way. the court of appeals, which agreed with the trial court, that proposition 8 striking down gay marriage in californ
that these politicians are saying about that is not true. >> pete williams is nbc's justice correspondent. pete, after the news conference on friday, we have that interview from wane la pierre sitting down with david gregory over the weekend. the interview really came as no surprise after what we witnessed on friday. >> it believes there are many -- sfwlo did he say, thomas, they want to encourage schools to -- the nra is willing to help train people, whether it's policemen or volunteers, whatever local school districts want to do -- >> it's gnting to satisfy the gun restrictions in the next senate. >> asa hutchinson, is now helming a model shield program that the nra is sponsoring to look into. how quick of a timeline or what is the timeline for the work that they're doing? >> well, it's going to depend on the amount of money that local school districts can spend to hire these people. what the nra says is we've been training people in firearm safety for years. we are willing to help train armed security people if the school districts can come up with the money. they've trained about 10,000 of these p
your way at the top of the hour, we'll bring that to you live. more from pete williams. new details on the gunman. the latest from pete, next. capella university understands businesses are trying to come back from rough economic times. employees are being forced to do more with less. and the need for capable leaders is greater than ever. when you see these problems do you take a step back, or do you want to dive right in? with a degree in business from capella university, you'll have the knowledge to go further in your career than you ever thought possible. let's get started at for thos...this...ions of doing this... ...and this, dancing in their heads... ...we have these. home depot gift cards. give the gift of doing, in-store or online. until i had the shingles. i have never encountered such a burning sensation... it was like a red rash. like somebody had set a bag of hot charcoal on my neck. i had no idea it came from chickenpox. it's something you never want to encounter. for more of the inside story, visit >>> we will leave no stone unturned as we l
is why. and some officials are wondering if we will ever know that answer. pete williams joins me now. and i know, pete, you say there's been a lot of searching going on of these hard drives, the computers in the lanza household and authorities are pretty pessimistic. >> right. i think you're right to say there's some doubt about whether they will ever know why. not that any answer would be adequate, of course. but secondly, the hopes for a quick answer by finding something in the house, a note, a letter, something on his computer, there was no note or letter we're told and the hard drive was so damaged, they're having a very hard time getting anything useful off of it. now, what they will try to do is they'll look at the family billing records. they'll see what internet service provider was being used. they'll look at telephone records. they'll try to look at communicationes and try to come at it in a different direction instead of from the computer outward from the outside world inward to see if that can shed any light. but apparently, adam lanza was not a user of social media. ther
-sex marriage. pete williams live in washington. pete, with a good morning to you, let's get all the details on these cases from you. fill us in. >> this is a very big deal, alex. the supreme court has never before in its history agreed to take a serious look at the issue of same-sex marriages and now it's going to be doing that the justices will look at two questions. first, can the federal government refuse to recognize these marriages in the states where they are already legal and secondly, what's to come of them in california. >>> just a day after washington state become the latest allowing gay couples to get married, the supreme court said it will delve into one of the nation's most hotly debated issues. >> the highest court in the land has decided to take up what will be one of the biggest civil rights cases that this court could ever hear. >> the court agreed to take up the legal battle over california's proposition 8 passed by voters four years ago ending same-sex marriage in the state. a federal appeals court ruled the ban unconstitutional on grounds that applied only in california.
want to start with nbc correspondent pete williams about what we are learning about the investigation. do we know more about why it happened? >> i don't think we can ever get a satisfactory answer, there is no satisfactory answer to such a heinous act. there's some evidence at his mother's house, they have a commuter there and they're analyzing that to see what they can get out of it. >> what was the scenario? >> the scenario, it all starts friday morning when he takes his mother's gun, she had purchased them legally, this is a woman who grew up in rural new hampshire, was comfortable can guns, liked them. he kills her, takes three of those guns to the school, in her car, forces his way in by shattering the window. they had a buzzer system and he forced his way in. the principal tried to stop him and he concentrated his firepower on these two classrooms with devastating effect. the detail that was so shocking is that he used an assault style weapon, a bushmaster .223, the same weapon that the washington snipers used ten years ago and shot these children several times, sometimes as muc
took no action today on the pending gay marriage cases. justice correspondent pete williams is live for us at the supreme court. this is now two weeks in a row, pete, that we thought we would get an answer to them about how they would plan on taking up this question of gay marriage. >> right. two case, the defense of marriage act and proposition 8 from california. nothing on the orders list today. so we'll find out later today whether the court is going to take it up again at its closed door conference on this friday. so my guess is this friday will be the next day we'll find out whether or not they'll take either of these two cases, chuck. >> and, pete, your expectation is can they put it all into one case or -- >> reporter: no, they can't. they're completely separate issues. the defense of marriage act is a federal law. it says nothing about whether states have to recognize gay marriage. it just says that if they do the federal government won't recognize them. the prop 8 case potentially raises a much more fundamental issue whether a state can deny same-sex marriage. the court cou
learning more about the horror and the heroism at the school. nbc news justice correspondent pete williams is following the investigation since the beginning. pete, when's the latest? >> reporter: well, the latest is, you know, a whole different array of lots of different things that law enforcement is doing but in terms of what you said, yes, i think we have a very clear or pretty clear idea of how things unfolded that on friday morning at sometime law enforcement doesn't know adam lanza shot and killed his mother, shot her several times as she was in bed. damaged the computer, several times. took the hard drive out and damaged that. there was hope that they could recover data from it but so far they haven't been able to. doesn't mean they won't but the discovery of this computer raised hopes of a fairly quick source of information about maybe his plans, what he had been saying, whether he was communicating with anyone. now if there's anything to be gained from that at all, it is going to take a longer time. then he drove to the school with three guns he his legally purchased in the past
. justice correspondent pete williams has those details. >> reporter: the hour fig consequences begin friday morning when adam lanza takes hundreds of rounds of ammunition from his gun enthusiast mother and uses one of them to kill her, nancy lanza, shooting her several times. before leaving, he damages his computer. investigators are trying to retrieve what was stored. before 9:30, he loads the guns and ammunition into his mother's car and drives to sandy hook elementary school. a place he knows from his childhood. >> he had a relationship to the school, had attended there, at least that's what i'm led to believe. but beyond that, we really don't know a whole lot. >> reporter: relatives said that his mother once volunteered there. he's carrying two handguns and a bushmaster ar-15 style rifle. the school's door is locked. so adam lanza blasts his way in with the rifle. the sound of the shots alarms principal dawn hochsprung and school psychologist who come running. immediately killed. he turns toward the first grade classes. he heads to the classroom of substitute teacher lauren rousseau. fr
life. >> nbc's pete williams reporting. >>> last night president obama exited to a standing ovation in newtown, after he called for change when it comes to guns. as sandy hook remains closed indefinitely. nbc's danielle leigh joins us from newtown. how important was it for them to hear directly from the president? >> reporter: bill, good morning. people are finding comfort in the president's promise to do something to prevent future mass shootings. the country and really the whole world is behind them right now. unfortunately it does limit to replace their sadness. as this community prepares to lay to rest two of their youngest victims. for this community they're just struggling to cope with this unimaginable crime, we're just about a week away from the christmas holiday and i was speaking a man who lost a loved one at a memorial yesterday, he said that he can't celebrate this year. for many of them, the reality is just starting to sink in. the schools are here closed. as early as tomorrow, students who didn't attend sandy hook elementary school will go back to school. reporting liv
in hoboken, new jersey. nbc's pete williams has the latest information about the gunman. >> reporter: chris, this has been a day of confusion about who has involved, and exactly what happened. but tonight, it is becoming a bit clearer, though the central question of why remains unanswered. and we are learning more about where the guns came from. investigators say the man who committed one of the worst mass shootings in u.s. history was just twenty years old. the son of a kindergarten teacher at the school he attacked. they identify him tonight as adam lanza, and they say when he entered the school he was dressed all in black, carrying two handguns and hundreds of rounds of ammunition. >> the minutes after the officers arrived they realized what a horrific scene we had there. >> reporter: adding to the confusion, the officials say, the gunman was carrying his brother's identification. when police tracked the brother down in hoboken, new jersey, about 80 miles away, they learned the man was actually adam lanza, who was rumored to have mental health issues. >> the perpetrator of the crime is d
. it's the one thing that would keep people safe. >> let's bring in justice correspondent pete williams. pete, the nra not budging on its message from the press briefing that it gave on friday to the appearance on "meet the press" yesterday. their point is that the best issue for the gun control problem is not more regulation, but to have armed officers, trained armed people manning our schools. if past is prologue, where is the nra's next move going forward? >> well, you know, i think that's a good question because past may not be prologue here. the past was that the obama administration saw absolutely no chance of getting this flew congress. president obama when he campaigned for his first term, said he would like to look at reveezing the assault weapons ban. the white house sent some gentle signal early on they might try to do that, and it was instantly clear that they backed away from it. the mere prospect of president obama's being elected caused a huge run on ammunition, police departments were almost running out of it. now many democrats think the situation is different because o
. >> joining me with the very latest on the investigation is nbc news justice correspondent, pete williams. pete, where are connecticut state police focusing today as they try to uncover more behind the reasons of adam lanza? >> well, there's a huge wide range of what they're doing, thomas. they're interviewing witnesses still. they haven't even gotten to interviewing the children yet. that's going to be a very difficult process to do, very delicate one is the way they described it. there were two adult survivors. they have the history of the weapons, the history of the ammunition, all of that to look at. now, the hopes were fairly high that they might have a breakthrough with adam lanza's computer that was at his mother's home at the scene where he shot his mother before this all began. but there's some pessimism about that now because he damaged the computer, took the hard drive out of the computer, damaged that further. they knew that when they got it. they thought well, you know, maybe we can get something out of it but i'm told the initial attempts to get information have been unsucce
first serious look at the issue of same-sex marriage. nbc's pete williams joins us live at the supreme court. pete, is this not a historic moment in the process of recognition for same-sex marriage? >> an important step in the process, whether it will lead toward recognition or not, we don't know, of course. that's the big question that one of these cases raises. the surprising thing here, martin, is that the court took both these cases. tft widely expected they would hear the appeal to the federal defense of marriage act because the supreme court feels its duty to step in whenever the lower court has said an act of congress is unconstitutional. the defense of marriage act passed in 1996 signed by president clinton says that in those states where people are legally married, same-sex couples are legally married, the federal government won't recognize their benefits. the challengers argue that that is unconstitutional discrimination. we assume the court would take up that case. the surprise here today is that the justices really went the whole way and took up the other big question here,
correspondent pete williams. so, pete, what happened was basically the white house didn't view the senate as in recess though republicans were doing the same gig. >> reporter: the question here legally, is the senate in recess. the obama administration says, no. the sessions are a sham. they last less than a minute. the congress or the senate when it decided to do this passed an order saying that no business would be conducted during these pro forma sessions. what are more do you need? the senate says we'll decide whether we're in recess or not and we say we're not, and not only that in the early part of the recess from december of last year to january of this year, the senate actually passed an extension to the payroll tax cut. so is the senate in recess or not? and this is it either going to go to the supreme court, chuck, or the courts are going to say, you know what, we can't -- this is a dispute between the political branches. you guys work it out. i don't think it's 100% clear whether the courts will decide they can decide this question. >> that seems odd. i want to throw up a graph
is pete williams, our justice correspondent. pete, in reading the report, it seems as though the mexican affiliate of hsbc, among others, has been operating with complete immunity. >> well, not millions of dollars, billions of dollars. >> billions. >> to launder from mexico, and i thought one of the interesting things today is the justice department announced this $2 billion settlement with hsbc is for some of the banks in mexico, the cartels were such regular customers, they knew the exact dimensions in the teller windows, what the gap was, and they had boxes specially made so they could slide the bocks of cash through the teller windows. what the government said today is that they were turning a completely blind eye to this or at least knew about it and failed to do anything about it, and then, of course, doing business, allowing banks to launder money that was coming from cuba, libya, the sudan, and other countries that are on the list of prohibited countries to do business with at u.s. banks. for all those reasons it was a massive settlement with hsbc. >> it's hard not to assume with
correspondent pete williams. on the investigation, pete, you have been digging into this from the very beginning. what is the latest? >> in fact, andrea, the police say that moving vans are coming to that school today so they can take the furniture out of it to use in whatever new facility -- whatever other building they will be using to conduct classes for the students at sandy hook. the hopes had been relatively high that perhaps there would be a fairly expeditious answer to this question of why, but i think those hopes were somewhat -- having somewhat tempered in the last 24 hours. the police did find when they went to nancy lanza's house, his mother, and discovered she had been killed there, they found his computer, and they thought that they might be able to get some data off of that if he had been in contact with certain web sites, if he had been buying things, if he had said anything, but they found that the computer had been seriously damaged, that the hard drive had been removed and also damaged, and there was initial thought that even despite this damage, they might be able to get some
of a generation. nbc news justice correspondent pete williams joins me now. pete, we learned that the high court is going to weigh in on these two cases. tell us about them. how are they different? >> well, they're very different issues. the first is a challenge to a federal law called the defense of marriage act. it says that marriage as far as the federal government is concerned can only be between one man and one woman. that means that in the states like washington where same-sex marriage is legal the federal government doesn't recognize those marriages, denying those couples about 1,000 benefits. if the supreme court strikes that law down, it wouldn't say states have to allow same-sex marriage. it would just say when they do the federal government has to recognize them. the other is a challenge to proposition 8 in california. that's the voter passed initiative that barred same-sex marriage in that state. now, that law was overturned, prop 8 was, by a federal appeals court that said you can't give a right and then take it away like this. if the supreme court does nothing more than uphold that
correspondent pete williams with us from washington. pete, this weapon that lanza used at sandy hook elementary, a military-style rifle with 30 rounds in the clip, hundreds more at the ready, this is legal in a state with an assault weapons ban. tell our audience how is that possible? >> it's possible because of the way that assault weapons are defined in the law. this was true in the original assault weapons ban that was a federal one from 1994 to 2004. what it does is it says if a weapon possesses a certain number of features that the law considers to be primarily for military purpose such as a flash suppressor or a collapsable stock, if you have enough of those features, then the weapon becomes an assault weapon and it's banned. if it doesn't have enough of those features, then it's not. it's not the overall construction of the weapon. it's the focus on these individual features. and this is sort of the heart of the controversy, martin, because on the one hand is the point i gather your question implies, which is the assault weapons restriction seems to be too narrow. on the other hand, the
's go now to our justice correspondent pete williams who joins us from washington. pete, what is the latest and what can you tell us about this gunman's identity? >> well, you know, we thought we knew it earlier in the day. we had been told and a number of other news organizations had been told by several different law enforcement agencies and officials that the name was ryan lanza, but now it may be, martin, that the person who fired the shots was carrying someone else's i.d. so it may turn out that at the end of the day the person who fired the shots was ryan lanza's brother, adam, and federal officials and local officials are still trying to sort that out precisely which of the two of them it was. but what we're told is that the other person who was killed in newtown, connecticut, is a family member. we don't know what the family relationship was, and we're also told that the mother of those two ryan brothers caught at the school, that that was the family connection. we were told that the person with the gun carried two handguns into the school, a 9 millimeter pistol, two o
's where we want to start this special hour this morning with pete williams on what more we are learning about this investigation. and, pete, do we know about why it happened? >> no. i don't think we do, and i think -- of course, i don't think we can ever get a satisfactory answer. there is no satisfactory answer to this, such a monstrous act. there is some hope that evidence in the house where his mother was killed, where he killed his mother, they believe, will help illuminate what was in his mind. he had a computer there, and they are analyzing that to see what they can get out of it. >> what can you tell us about what happened if what was the scenario? >> well, it all starts friday morning when he takes his mother's guns. she had purchased them legally. this is a woman who grew up in rural new hampshire, comfortable with guns, collected them. he killed her. takes three of the guns to the school. drives there in her car. forces his way in, apparently by shattering a window. they had a buzzer system. he forced his way in. the principal and the school psychologist tried to stop him. he
of marriage act and california's proposition 8. nbc's pete williams joins us now from washington with all the latest details. good evening, pete. >> reporter: good evening, larry. the vilma case is the easier one. federal law signed into law by president clinton in 1996. it says if a person is legally married in a state, the federal government can't recognize those marriages. that's where you talked about federal benefits heterosexual couples get and same sex couples do not. the prop 8 thing is bigger. while potentially it's confined to the state of california only, the question it out there having given the right to gay marriage could the state then take it away through proposition 8 passed by a majority of the vote nurse 2008. having taken that case, the court could get to the bedrock issue. can any state refuse to let same sex couples get married under the federal constitution. it could potentially be narrow or very far. >> pete, as i understand it, let me ask you. this one of these things, maybe the driving one, is defense of marriage act was about paying the estate act. where one of
-same-sex proposition 8. as pete williams tells us now, we'll have to wait a little longer. >> craig, it was quite an anti-climax friday. waiting all day expecting we'd hear something from the supreme court on what they would take and an order's list that had just two cases on that had to do with patents and pan patenting n genes. it's impossible to know for sure. quite likely that the justices want more time to discuss these cases. so, they'll reschedule this for perhaps their next closed door conference which is this coming friday. that sometimes happens. the voting rights act case, for example, which was granted earlier in november. they put on several successive lists before they finally decided to grant it. so, that's one possibility. it's also possible that they're not going to take some of these cases. but on friday, all the supreme court announces is cases that it will grant, not cases it will deny. we'll get the denials list that's ready this coming monday. so, that will be the next place where we'll watch to the see whether they denied any of these cases and it's also not out of the real
should have guards armed with guns of their own. let's go to pete williams live in washington. good morning. >> reporter: good morning, alex. the nra's response comes from wane la pierre, he said the best way to protect children is to put more security officers armed with guns in the nation's schools. >> the only way to stop a monster from killing our kids is to be personally involved and invested in a plan of absolute protection. the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun. would you rather have your 911 call bring a good guy with a gun from a mile away? or from a minute away? >> reporter: la pierre says banks, the president, and congress are protected by armed guards and schools should be too. somewhere between a fourth and a third of nation's schools already have an armed guard. most in middle and high schools. they didn't say anything about assault weapons or high-capacity magazines. the nra's plan was called a distraction from the more basic problem, the widespread availability of those weapons. one point of common ground between nra and president ob
also, nbc's pete williams reported earlier that the guns used in this attack were registered to adam lanza's mother and were legally purchased apparently. and we have also learned originally it was believed she is a kindergarten teacher here at the school, it was believed she was killed in her classroom at the school. we also learned that there was a separate crime scene not far from the school, a home where a person was found dead. we have now learned that the person found dead at that home was indeed adam lanza's mother. and then he came here to the school and carried out that attack that killed 20 children under the age of 10 and six adults. those are the latest leads that we're following. >> chris, let me ask you real quick. in other words, the chronology here to the best of what we know is that adam lanza first killed his mother at this newtown house and then went to the school to commit this mass murder? is that what you're saying? >> reporter: yeah, that is the latest indication. and you know from being on these things that that will change five times between now and midnight.
police not closed in quickly. nbc news justice correspondent pete williams has more on the investigation now. >> reporter: the horrifying sequence officials say begins friday morning. they don't know what time when adam lanza takes hundreds of rounds of ammunition and four firearms from his gun-enthusiast mother and uses one of them to kill her, nancy lanza. shooting her several times perhaps as she lay sleeping. before leaving, they say he damages his computer. investigators are now trying to retrieve what was stored. just before 9:30, he loads the guns and ammunition into his mother's car and drives the roughly five miles to sandy hook elementary. it's a place he knows, officials say, from his childhood. though why he goes there to kill remains unanswered. >> he had a relationship to the school, had attended there. at least that's what i'm led to believe. but bei don't understayond thatt know. >> reporter: he's carrying two handguns and a bushmaster ar-15-style rifle with several high-capacity magazines, each able to hold 30 rounds. the school door is locked, state officials say. so ad
a major role in making sure the final bill bans semi-automaltic assault weapons. as nbc's pete williams tells us tonight, this is the major, unresolved issue and it is a big one. >> they're called semi-automaltic weapons. each pull of the trigger fires one bullet. americans own about a million of them. but they've been used in some especially deadly shootings, like this one last july at a san francisco law firm that killed eight. that led a california senator to propose a ban on 19 types of semiautomatic rifles, pistols and shotguns. that's now in the senate crime bill. it targets weapons that have detachable clips for bullets, folding or telescoping stops and such features as bayonet mounts. >> the bill sponsor was successful. the bill became law. the bill's sponsor was senator diane feinstein of california. >> we, as a country, decided to let it expire. remember how i said the vote on the ban on plastic guns back in the 80s was a very lopsided vote. it was 413 votes in favor and only four votes against? dick cheney was one of the four designed to slip by airport x-ray machines when he
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